Meet the man who made history riding American Pharoah to victory, then donated winnings to charity.

When it comes to horse racing, we tend to remember the names of the horses more than the jockeys, but here's a jockey you really should know.

On June 6, American Pharoah became the first horse to win racing's Triple Crown in 37 years.

It's just the 12th horse in history to win all of the three major racing events in a single year — the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes.

But there's another part of this story you might not have heard about: the jockey.


Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images.

American Pharoah's jockey, Victor Espinoza, donated all his winnings from the Belmont Stakes to charity.

All of it. Reportedly $80,000.

Wow.

Photo by Elsa/Getty Images.

The charity is City of Hope, and they fight cancer, HIV/AIDS, and other life-threatening illnesses.

In an interview with ABC News, Espinoza casually mentioned his plans for the massive payday.

"I won the Triple Crown right now, but I don't make any money because I'm donating all the money to the City of Hope."

The group confirmed Espinoza's plans to donate on their website, and included another statement from him:

"Good health — that's what I want for everyone. With good health, people can enjoy life and do those things that make them happy. By working to defeat cancer, City of Hope's researchers and doctors are bringing a greater chance of health and happiness to people everywhere."

American Pharoah's trainer, Bob Baffert, also donated his Belmont winnings, splitting it between three charities.

Bob and Jill Baffert following American Pharoah's win at the Belmont Stakes. Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images.

According to Louisville's Courier-Journal, Baffert and his wife Jill will donate $50,000 to the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund, $50,000 to the California Retirement Management Account, and $50,000 to Old Friends Farm.

As the name would suggest, the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund provides financial assistance to former jockeys who have suffered severe on-track injuries. The California Retirement Management Account is a fund to care for retired racehorses. Old Friends Farm is a retirement facility for horses located in Georgetown, Kentucky.

Between Baffert and Espinoza, even those of us who aren't fans of horse racing have quite a bit to cheer for.

Because at the end of the day, American Pharoah goes back to being a horse. A really cool horse and all, but still a horse.

Here's a prime example of a cool horse. GIF via Three UK.

His jockey and his trainer used their winnings to help save and improve some lives.

Years from now, when you think back on American Pharoah's historic run, be sure to remember his team, too.

Most Shared
Rice University

A plaque marking the death of a glacier comes with a haunting message to future generations.

The former Okjökull glacier in western Iceland is the first to lose its status as a glacier due to climate change. Known now as simply "Ok," the once sprawling ice sheet has melted to about seven percent of what it was a century ago and was declared no longer a glacier in 2014.

Scientists predict that in the next 200 years, if the climate crisis is not mitigated, the rest of Iceland's 400 glaciers will meet the same fate.

Next month, the land that Ok once covered will be marked with a memorial plaque. Researchers from Rice University in Houston, Texas, Icelandic author Andri Snær Magnason, and geologist Oddur Sigurðsson—who first declared the glacier's lost status—will unveil the plaque in a public ceremony on August 18.

The plaque's text begins, "A letter to the future," then reads:

Keep Reading Show less
Planet
Photo by Raul Varzar on Unsplash

A quarter of domestic cats have had their claws removed. Even though it might make the owners lives a little easier, the procedure can be incredibly painful for the animals and has been described as "barbaric."

Most of Europe and Canada have banned cat declawing (onychectomy), as well as several U.S. cities, but New York just became the first state to do so. Now, any vet who declaws a cat in the there will face a fine of $1,000, unless the procedure is medically necessary.

"Declawing is a cruel and painful procedure that can create physical and behavioral problems for helpless animals, and today it stops," New York GovernorAndrew Cuomo saidin a statement, per USA Today.

Some people get their cat declawed to stop their furniture and flesh from being destroyed. However, declawing a cat isn't the best way to stop a cat from scratching. In fact, it's probably the worst. "If a person has an issue with a cat scratching, well, first of all, I'd advise them don't get a cat because that is the very nature of a cat. But, secondly, there are ways to change cats' behavior. Get scratching posts. There are vinyl sheathes that could be placed on the nails," Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal said. Rosenthal sponsored the bill and is a cat owner, herself. "[T]here's many ways to address that behavior." None of the ways you address the problem should include taking it's claws off.

Keep Reading Show less
Cities
Alie Ward

Your dinner plate shouldn't shame you for eating off of it. But that's exactly what a set being sold at Macy's did.

The retailer has since removed the dinnerware from their concept shop, Story, after facing social media backlash for the "toxic message" they were sending.

The plates, made by Pourtions, have circles on them to indicate what a proper portion should look like, along with "helpful — and hilarious — visual cues" to keep people from "overindulging."

There are serval different styles, with one version labeling the largest portion as "mom jeans," the medium portion as "favorite jeans," and the smallest portion as "skinny jeans."

Keep Reading Show less
Well Being

In today's installment of the perils of being a woman, a 21-year-old woman shared her experience being "slut-shamed" by her nurse practitioner during a visit to urgent care for an STD check.

The woman recently had sex with someone she had only just met, and it was her first time hooking up with someone she had not "developed deep connections with."

Keep Reading Show less
Well Being